Sep 18, 2022 - Politics & Policy

GOP Sen. Mike Rounds says he doesn't support Graham's abortion bill

CNN’s “State of the Union” host Jake Tapper, left, interviews Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) on Sept. 18.

Republican Sen. Mike Rounds joined several other prominent Republicans in saying he won't support Sen. Lindsey Graham's (R-S.C.) new bill that would ban abortion nationwide after 15 weeks, the South Dakota senator said on CNN's "State of the Union" on Sunday.

Why it matters: Although the bill doesn't have a chance of passing in a Democratic-controlled Congress, some Republican lawmakers, including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), have distanced themselves from the proposal ahead of the midterms.

  • Graham's plan comes less than two months out from the election, with abortion expected to be an important issue for voters following the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
  • Republican candidates across the U.S. have moved to disappear hard-line anti-abortion stances they took during their primaries, particularly in battleground states like Pennsylvania, Michigan, Colorado, Arizona and North Carolina.

What he's saying: "I think a better approach probably will be to allow the states to work through this and to find the appropriate language on a state-by-state basis," Rounds told CNN's Jake Tapper.

  • "I think there will be a consensus over a period of years," he added. "But at this point, to have Congress step back and tell all the states that we know better than them how to handle this, is probably not the right direction to go."
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